Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Life With Bennett: No one could have prepared me for this...

This sweet boy has stolen my heart...

Plank Photography
And while people have always told me that there is no love quite like the love you have for your children...I was in no way prepared for the feelings that overcame me the day this little guy came into the world. 

 
Sure...I knew I loved him from the minute I found out I was pregnant...but it was still an abstract sort of love. It was still the "idea" of a baby and the idea of being a mommy.

At our 20 week ultrasound seeing our baby, looking like a baby and knowing that HE would be joining our family in 4 months only made this love grow...


But again...this love was still so abstract. I knew were were going to be mommy and daddy to a sweet little boy that I couldn't wait to meet...but I had never met him, so while I loved him...I had no idea to what extent I would love him once he was here.


On March 30th, Bennett Oliver Smith came into our lives like a wrecking ball to the heart...his first 30 minutes of life were scary and unsettling. I had only held my sweet little boy in my arms for seconds before he was whisked away, but all it took were those few seconds for me to realize that there was nothing in the world I wouldn't do for my son and my heart ached with worry and fear.

Hearing our little boy cry for the first time was such an emotional experience...one that filled me with relief and oh so much love.


When they finally brought him to me nothing else in the world mattered...I was smitten and couldn't take my eyes of this perfect little human that we created.


Over the last few weeks I have cried more tears than I have ever cried in my life...and while I am sure the massive amounts of hormones coursing through my body have something to do with it...these tears are mostly due to the fact that I am so damn happy.

I don't think I realized until that moment when I first held my baby how much I wanted and needed to be a mom. My heart is so full of love and joy when I look into his eyes. My heart nearly explodes out of my chest every time he does something we deem cute (which is every single second!)

Our lives before this had always been filled with so much love and happiness...but our lil' man filled a hole I didn't even know existed. Becoming mommy and daddy to this little miracle is the greatest joy I have ever had in my life...and I feel so lucky to have been given this precious gift.

So please excuse me while I snuggle up with my baby and cry these happy tears and thank God every day that he chose this sweet little boy to be ours <3


Saturday, April 15, 2017

March Book Review

I had big plans for March...

My last month before baby AND Spring Break? I definitely planned to make the most of this month and read several books...

Spoiler alert...I did not. I actually only read 2 books this month...and the second was not finished until a few days into April...but in my defense Lil' B's arrival was a bit of a surprise and labor was a little quicker than I anticipated so I didn't get any reading done at the hospital #AmateurHour

And while I didn't technically finish book #2 in March the majority of it was read in March, and it's my New Year's Resolution...so I make the rules :) 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1373381.The_Ship_of_Brides

 I mentioned this book in February's book review and I was about half-way through. While I enjoyed the book I have to say it took me FOREVER to finally finish. In my defense..it was a LONG book and I was tired. Staying awake at night was tough...and weekends were spent finishing the nursery and finishing all the last minute things before baby. 

I haven't met a JoJo Moyes book that I haven't liked and this one was no exception. It's not my favorite of hers, but one I enjoyed none the less. I love historical fiction, and I especially love it when it's about a time period/event that I don't have a lot of prior knowledge with. I almost feel like I am learning and becoming more worldly, and enjoying myself at the same time :)

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30821598-my-not-so-perfect-life

Sophia Kinsella is one that doesn't usually disappoint me...but something about this book druuuuuggggg ooooonnn forever for me. I am not sure if it is because my mind was busy thinking about baby's arrival...and then I finished it once he was born. I suppose my mind was not in a place to enjoy a book...even one as simple and mindless as this one :) I wouldn't say it's the worst, but I have read better. 

April is off to a good start...I have an ebook downloaded and it's been my best friend during the never ending nursing sessions and somethings at 2AM when lil' man decides he won't sleep unless I am holding him :) 

I have a feeling I will get through at least 2 books in April, but I won't make any promises!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Bennett Oliver Smith: Birth Story

I have been wanting to write Bennett's birth story for days now, but I have been having a  hard time trying figure out where to begin. How can I put into words a day that changed our lives so completely? How can I even begin to convey what a meaningful day this was for us in a blog post? Becoming Bennett's mommy and daddy was an experience that no one could have prepared us for, so I will do my best to do it justice...


It all began on a dark and stormy night, which is not just me being dramatic...there was lots of rain and was even a tornado watch! I had plans with my girlfriends for our weekly girl's dinner. Since I was going to be out for the evening AJ had his brother come over to keg the beer they had brewed a few weeks earlier.

At dinner the girls and I were talking about baby's arrival and how I was getting anxious not knowing when it would happen...and knowing it could be any day now or it could be 2 weeks from now. I had a few contractions throughout dinner...but I had been having some inconsistent contractions all week so I didn't pay them any attention. 

I got home from dinner about 7:45, and AJ and Brian had finished kegging their beer and were playing darts and enjoying a few beers in the garage. I hung out there for a few minutes just chatting...and smelling their beer :) It had been a long day, so I decided to head inside to get ready for bed, but before going inside I jokingly said to AJ "Don't drink too many beers tonight...you know my water could break at any time" We then laughed about this and I headed upstairs to get ready for bed.

As usual my first stop was the bathroom, and once I was finished I stood up and felt a gush of water. My first thought was "oh crap, I peed on myself" but then I realized the water wasn't stopping. I panicked and thought "Did my water just break?!?" After a few seconds of shock I realized that it had in fact broken...only minutes after joking with AJ that it could break at any time...

I immediately grabbed my phone and called AJ...after several rings he finally picked up and I said "Do you remember how I said my water could break at any time? Well....it did" His reaction was silence and then "shut up...are you serious?" 

He then rushed upstairs and the look on his face was that of absolute terror...Here was this guy who is always so calm, cool, and collected, looking absolutely terrified. Luckily, I wasn't having any contractions yet and I for some reason remained really calm. 

I sent AJ to pack himself a bag and to grab my bag (luckily I had already gotten everything ready for myself) As he was doing this I was searching for the number for my doctor to see how soon we needed to get to the hospital. Since I wasn't having any contractions I didn't want to go too soon and end up there sitting around forever. After digging through all my pre-registration paperwork we FINALLY found the number we needed to call. We left a message for the doctor and hoped she would call back quickly.

I decided to hop in the shower while waiting for the doctor to call back. From what we had learned at our child birth classes it was likely going to be several more hours and I needed a distraction...and clean hair :)

While I was in the shower the doctor called back and told AJ that I could finish my shower and get cleaned up, but we should probably head to the hospital when I finished. I got out of the shower, blow dried my hair, and packed a few last minute things, and while doing this I felt my first contraction. It wasn't terrible, but it definitely stopped me in my tracks.

After calling the doctor we called my parents to let them know they needed to come get our other baby, Gracie, and they showed up a few minutes before we left the hospital. My mom, of course got emotional and started crying...and I surprisingly didn't. I think I was still in denial at what was happening.

At this point it was about 10:00PM and we were finally walking out the door when I had another contraction that was quite a bit stronger than the one before...it freaked me out a little and I told AJ "we better hurry"

Luckily, the hospital is only a couple of miles from our house, so when we hit EVERY.SINGLE.STOPLIGHT it still only took us about 10 minutes and I luckily didn't have another contraction on the ride to the hospital.

Like I mentioned before, it was raining, so AJ dropped me off at the entrance and I went in to get checked in while he parked the car and brought in our bags. I got to the front desk and the lady quickly got my paper work together and while she was doing this I had another minor contraction. AJ walked in, we finished up the paper work and they came around the corner with a wheelchair and we headed upstairs.

Once we got upstairs they took us to our room and told me to get changed into a gown and that the nurse would be right in. I was still feeling pretty good at this point, and hadn't had another contraction so AJ and I were hanging out in the room when reality finally hit us...we were going to have a baby VERY soon! We both were excited and terrified at the same time...but glad to be at the hospital ready to get going.

Our last selfie as a party of two :)
A few minutes later Gloria, our nurse, came in and started asking me questions and getting things ready. I had another contraction during this, and it was difficult to answer her questions, so AJ took over. She then had me get in bed so she could start my IV and finish checking me in.

Before my IV she wanted to check to see how far I had progressed and at that point I was at about 3.5 cm and about 80% effaced which hadn't changed from my appointment the week before.

After that, the contractions picked up...BIG TIME. They started coming every minute to minute in a half...and being chained to the bed made them worse (she said I couldn't get up and walk around until I was all checked in- which made me question why we had pre-registered?)

As the contractions picked up intensity and got closer together I started to panic a little...they hurt...REALLY bad and I wasn't sure how much more I could take. I then had a big contraction...the mother of all contractions and I started throwing up. I had tears in my eyes and told AJ "I don't think I can do this" The next hour went by painfully slow and was filled with contraction after contraction and I asked Gloria when I could get my epidural...she said that I had progressed far enough to get it, but I wasn't officially checked in yet...and that I had to wait for some blood work to come back to make sure it was safe for me to get an epidural...and when she said that I panicked thinking about the outcome if they said I couldn't get one! I have always considered myself to be pretty tough, but labor contractions were no match for my pain tolerance.

Around midnight, after about two hours of contraction after contraction the anesthesiologist finally wheeled his tool box in and I wanted to jump up and hug him! The nurse finally let me sit up in bed to get prepared. I ended up having 3 contractions while I was getting my epidural, but the change of position made them much more bearable. The laboring pre-epidural was nothing like I had been led to expect at our child-birth classes...I was stuck in bed, there was no exercise ball or walking the hallways...and laying in bed during a contraction is no cake walk.

The epidural had  been one of the things giving me the most anxiety going into it...but after those contractions it felt like nothing! He started with a shot to numb the area, and while this stung/burned a bit, it was something I could handle, and I didn't even feel the actual epidural. It then took another 15 minutes or so for the epidural to completely kick in...however immediately the contractions became much less intense and MUCH more bearable. These were more what I expected from the early labor contractions...

Shortly after the nurse checked my progress again and we were all surprised to hear that I was at 6.5cm and almost 100% effaced! This made me feel a little better about being such a baby about my contractions ;)

After the epidural kicked in I called my mom to let her know that we were checked in, that I had my epidural and that things were progressing. I then asked her if she would come up and sit with me for a bit. My mom of course agreed and was there about 20 minutes later and I was feeling GOOD thanks to the miracle that is an epidural! We texted some updates to family members, thinking it would still be several more hours before baby arrived.

Over the next few hours the nurse had me change positions and continued to check my progress...and things were moving REALLY quickly. Each time she checked me I was another centimeter dilated...and by 4 AM she told me it was time to push...WHAT?!?!?

My mom immediately got up and said she was going to wait in the waiting room...and at that moment I burst into tears. I looked at AJ and said "I need my mom, is it okay if she stays?" We had originally planned on it just being the two of us in the delivery room, but in that moment I knew I wanted and needed my mom to stay, and AJ of course agreed that she should stay.

The next 2 hours were spent pushing, making jokes, doing the wave, and singing songs (yes, it was a damn comedy show in the delivery room. I tend to get really silly when I am nervous!)

Finally, the doctor on call showed up...and while it wasn't Dr. Blevins, it was another doctor I had seen before and liked, so I immediately felt comfortable. She told me that we were so close to baby time and I just needed to give her a few good pushes. #ChallengeAccepted

A few big pushes later and Bennett Oliver was born! They immediately put him on my chest...and within seconds I knew something wasn't quite right. He wasn't crying and the doctor urgently said "we need to cut the cord now" and then one of the nurses turned to another nurse and said "we need to call the pic-nurse now" and at this point things started to happen really fast.

They took Bennett from me and rushed him to the warmer on the other side of the room...he still wasn't crying and I could see the urgency in the nurses actions. They began working on him and trying to get him to cry.  I of course freaked out and kept asking "what's wrong with him, why isn't he crying" and I was trying to position myself so I could see him. My doctor told me I needed to sit still and that baby was going to be just fine. She said he was just stunned....The nurses said he was in fact breathing and he was pinking up, but he still wasn't crying. He then started to pee all over the nurses...but still no crying. Everyone kept reassuring me he was fine, but seeing them put the oxygen mask on my teeny little baby broke my heart into a million little pieces. 

I sent my mom and AJ over to snap some photos of Bennett so I could see him..waiting 30 minutes was agonizing!
I immediately sent AJ over to be with him and my mom stayed by my side...and in that moment while she was reassuring me that he would be just fine I was so grateful she was there with me and I knew that there had been a reason I had asked her to stay.

I will be forever grateful that my husband snapped this photo of me meeting our little guy for the first time...the chaos in the delivery room made pictures the furthest thing from my mind.
After an agonizing 5 minutes I finally heard the sweet, sweet, sound I had been waiting to hear. His loud powerful cry was music to this mama's ears. I immediately started crying tears of relief.
 It was still another 25 minutes before they brought him to me...but the moment they laid him on my chest the nightmare was forgotten. My sweet baby boy was healthy and in my arms FINALLY!

And to think that I was worried about the gestational diabetes and having a 10lb baby! The nurses all praised me for being so diligent with my diet and keeping myself and baby healthy.

About an hour later I reluctantly handed him over so we could get his height and weight and while I knew he was a bit early, I was so shocked by how tiny he was. 6lbs 12 oz and 19.5" tall (although they said that he would likely measure a little shorter after the impressive cone head of his went down!)

The absolute BEST moment of my life :)
All in all, minus the little hiccup of the delay in crying I couldn't have asked for a better labor and delivery experience...it was really quick and easy...my water broke at 8:00PM...contractions started around 10PM...I got my epidural around midnight...and started pushing at 4:00AM...and at 5:25AM Bennett Oliver made his dramatic entrance into the world, and in that moment our lives were forever changed for the better.

A few hours after Bennett was born we took a family selfie...I didn't remember my mom taking the picture of the 3 of us before she left, so this isn't our first (or our last) family selfie :)
These past two weeks, while exhausting, have been the very best days of my life. Most days I find myself just staring at my sweet boy and crying tears of happiness. How did I get so lucky to be this little boy's mama?
Tuesday, April 4, 2017

39 Weeks: Welcome to the world, Bennett Oliver Smith


Lil' man just couldn't wait a day longer to meet his mommy and daddy...and we are sure glad he didn't! At 38 weeks 5 days Bennett Oliver made a quick and dramatic entrance into the world!

How far along?
38 weeks 5 days...looks like he got the early gene from his mama :)

How big is baby?
6lbs 12 oz, 19.5" long

What's baby up to this week?
Baby spent the week listening to my voice and continuing to develop his brain.

Symptoms?
I had a sudden burst of energy this weekend and the need to nest ALLTHETHINGS! I always thought nesting was a made up thing...but when I thought I needed to clean up and organized the garage...I knew it was real. Thank goodness for a husband who humored me because we got everything completed prior to Bennett's arrival. 

I also had all sorts of inconsistent contractions all week, and just when I started to think that we needed to start timing them they would stop. 

Maternity Clothes?
I officially made it through with only having to purchase a pair of jeans, a pair of leggings, a pair of dress pants and a handful of tops and tank tops and mixing those with dresses and cardigans that I already owned.

Sleep?
I was lucky to sleep pretty great throughout the pregnancy. I was up a few times in the middle of the night this week with contractions, but they always went away and I was able to fall back asleep easily.

Missing Anything?
Not running this week was hard, but I went on a few walks which was nice for the fresh air...and clearly it worked to move things along :)

Craving?
Nothing really...I didn't have much of an appetite.

Aversions?
Sunday night AJ made his famous chili (my favorite) and after a few bites I was super nauseous and sick to my stomach. It tasted funny and just didn't sit right and I couldn't finish it.
I then spent 10 minutes digging through the fridge trying to find something that sounded good...because with GD I can't just not eat...which is what I really wanted to do :(

Emotions?
I had a little anxiety on Saturday because we still had SO MUCH  WE HAD TO DO (in my crazy mind) and we started several projects but couldn't finish until Sunday...I had myself convinced I was going to go into labor Saturday night and leave the house a mess :) Luckily, we got everything done and ready before my water broke Wednesday night! 

Movement? 
Pushes, nudges, and lots of reminders that he was running out of space.

Throughout the pregnancy I felt like he was always moving and kicking me...and now that he is here I can see that this was true! He kicks his legs constantly...even when he is sound asleep. Future runner in the making? #IThinkYes

Best Moment of the week
Meeting our sweet baby boy! 

Pregnancy Brain Moments
Nothing specific, but I had a lot more trouble staying focused on anything for a long period of time. 

Looking forward to?
The next 18 weeks with my lil' man! I plan to soak up every single second! 

Projects/Baby Gear purchased?
We bought a deep freeze this weekend, moved our bedroom around (so the pack n' play would fit better) and moved our bedroom TV into the living room...I was a nesting fool! 

Running?
No running...no Jazzercise...but I did go on several long walks. I wanted to be one of those super-human pregnant ladies that was able to run up until the very end, but between my shins/calves and my hips/pelvis it just isn't in the cards.

People always say that being active during pregnancy makes for a quick and easy delivery...and I have to say in my case this was so true!

For the next 6 weeks I plan to take it easy and spend all my time soaking up these priceless moments with my little guy! I can't wait to get back to running...but I will be taking it easy and listening to my body so I can come back strong and injury free.

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Saturday, April 1, 2017

Life Lately: March

To say March was our most exciting month so far might be a bit of an understatement...This month was filled with lots of fun and excitement and our BEST surprise yet!

In March we were showered with lots of love and baby goodies by my wonderful staff! My team went above and beyond to throw a wonderful shower for me and Baby Smith.


We attended a breast feeding class...and let's just say that sweet little doll will never be able to unsee some of the things she saw ;) 


We celebrated Finley's 4th birthday-How is this even possible? I swear she was just born yesterday! 


We spent lots of time assembling baby stuff


AJ worked from home several days during my spring break...and he clearly got a lot done ;) 


Gracie and I both got hair-cuts over spring break...but she is the only one that got a tacky bow-tie ;)


I spent an afternoon with this sassy pants learning about all things baby....


She showed me how to take proper care of a baby and even offered to come over when the baby was born to teach me how to change his diaper. 


We rounded out Spring Break with a visit to our pediatrician. As first time parents I am sure we had some of the most ridiculous questions...but she humored us anyway :) 


We spent an entire day finishing up the nursery and finally getting things hung on the wall


Over the last few months I have been buying things and just putting them in his room and figured whatever we didn't end up using I could take back...



I'm sure it comes as no surprise, but we ended up finding a place for every little thing I purchased....


The finished product was even better than I had imagined! 


We spent many eventing snuggling up and watching TV anticipating Baby Smith's arrival


And while baby wasn't due until April 7th...he surprised us by showing up a little bit early!


Our little April baby ended up being a March baby by just a few days! 


March was a pretty great month :)


And I am sure April...and all the months following this will be just as wonderful! Our little party of 2 is now a party of 3...and I can't wait for all the adventures headed our way!
Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Gestational Diabetes Check In: Week 9

10 more days...40 more finger pricks (give or take) and I am definitely seeing the light at the end of this tunnel!

Diet

I'm still easily controlling my numbers with diet, which has me counting my lucky stars! Yes, it's not ideal that I got this diagnoses at all...but at least I am not having to take insulin or having to discuss early induction with my doctor. While this isn't my favorite thing to be dealing with...it could definitely be worse! 
 
We tried a few new meals this week...but I think at this point we are done trying new meals and we will stick with our tried and true meals...which will likely stick around post-baby as well! If there was ever a silver-lining to this it would be the new yummy meals we were forced to try :)

Testing

The tips of my fingers are started to get a little sore...I mean, 4 pokes a day for 9 weeks is a lot. They are definitely ready for a break! If baby goes passed his due date (which first baby's generally do) I am looking at having to buy more test strips...I'm hoping to get the okay from my doctor to test one less time per day to avoid this...but if not, I will reluctantly spend the money and do what I am told... #RuleFollower

Exercise

Yea...soooooo, about this. I have completely stopped running and haven't been to Jazzercise in at least a week. Not only is my body physically having trouble working out, but I am just SO stinking tired after work it's hard to get motivated. I have been going on long walks at least every other day...and I get in plenty of steps/being on my feet teaching all day so I consider that exercise :) My numbers haven't really suffered, so that is good! 


Emotionally

I'm starting to get a little anxious thinking about d-day...not only am I worrying about what I have to do to get this baby out, but I have moments where I torture myself with worst case scenario...and the waiting game makes this anxiety a little worse. 

I keep reminding myself that I have done a great job controlling my numbers and doing everything possible to keep baby healthy and safe, but until he is in my arms safe and sound I will probably continue to worry :) 
Friday, March 24, 2017

38 Weeks: Gettin' Swole


Things are getting awfully snug around here...my shirts, my shoes...my uterus! I have also become a card-carrying member of the waddle squad #BeJealous

How far along?
38 weeks 

How big is baby?
Winter Melon or a Ukulele
 ~19.6" and ~6.61 lbs

What's baby up to this week?
He is slowly shedding that white goo on his skin called the vernix caseosa, although some might still remain at birth. You should have seen AJ's face when they told us about this at our child birth class...he is in for a real treat come d-day :)

Symptoms?
My feet...my poor, poor, sausage feet! I had been having some slight swelling the last few weeks, but usually only after a long day on my feet and even then I could alleviate most of the swelling by sitting down and putting my feet up...but now? They are in a permanent state of swole!

I've also been having what my doctor called pre-labor contractions...but since they aren't regular or getting more intense they are just my bodies way of preparing for the big day.

Oh...one more thing...I'm burning alive from the inside out. My face and neck feel and look sunburned...but nope, just hormones #PregnancyIsGlamorous

Maternity Clothes?
This has to be the worst part right now...getting dressed is no fun at all. The warmer than average temperatures have me rotating my 4 short sleeved shirts hoping no one notices my outfit repeats :) 

Sleep?
I'm so grateful that sleep is still relatively easy to come by these days. I did have one night where I just couldn't get comfortable because my belly felt so heavy, and AJ finally suggested I use our small decorative pillow to prop my belly up and it was glorious. My husband is a genius :)

Missing Anything?
Running

Craving?
Milk, milk, and more milk! And while it's not completely GD friendly I have found some high protein/low carb milk so I can satisfy my craving...and I can even have chocolate milk on occasion!

Aversions?
Not a thing!

Emotions?
I am a roller-coaster of emotions...on one hand I am absolutely giddy with excitement that we could be meeting our little boy ANY day! However, that "any day" thing is a little anxiety inducing as well...I'm a planner and words like "soon" or "someday" are not usually ones I prefer to use in BIG life-changing situations :)

Movement? 
Still lots of pushes and nudges...and some nights it feels like he is trying to push his way out...I keep trying to tell him he can escape at any time now :)

Best Moment of the week
We found out this weekend that we are going to be getting some new neighbors in a few weeks...and let's just say these are some of my VERY favorite people!

Pregnancy Brain Moments
I live in a constant state of pregnancy brain these days :) 

Looking forward to?
Not being pregnant anymore...while I have loved getting to experience this little miracle...I am more than ready to have my body back. I can't wait to sleep on my stomach, drink a beer, and walk through a crowded room without rubbing my belly on some poor unsuspecting person :)

Projects/Baby Gear purchased?
The nursery is DONE!! I have been buying things and shoving them in his closet and crib for the last few months, and we decided this weekend it was time to FINALLY get things hung on the wall...and I have to say it turned out even better than I ever imagined! I love, love, love his little room!

I also ordered a personalized Easter basket and chair from PBK...so lil' man officially officially has a name! #Finally #Whew

Running?
Tuesday was my last official attempt at a run. This last weekend I went out and made it about a mile before my legs begged me to stop. When I stopped my calves and shins were aching so bad it was hard to even walk. I was convinced it was the impact from the trail/sidewalks so I tried again on the treadmill Tuesday morning and after about .25 miles my legs said #NOPE

I was then planning on at least continuing with Jazzercise, but Wednesday after work on my way to a class I took a slight detour and ended up getting a pedicure instead of working out #Oops

I'm thinking the next 2 weeks shall be spent with my feet propped up and relaxing...and maybe throwing in the occasional walk to encourage lil' man to come out!

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Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Gestational Diabetes Check In: Week 8

8 weeks down...2 1/2 ish to go!! I cannot believe we are in the homestretch of not only this GD journey, but the pregnancy in general. At times it seems like it has flown by...and then other times it feels like it's absolutely dragging!

The anxiety has definitely set it...but it is outweighed heavily by the excitement of meeting our little man! I'm getting excited to snuggle him and see his sweet face...what will he look like? What color will his hair be? Will he have any hair? 

Diet

This week has me questioning my diagnoses all together even more so than usual. Like I mentioned last week from what I have read some cases tend to get better or level out around 36-37 weeks, and I am convinced I am one of those cases. Last week when I called my numbers in my dietician questioned me and asked if I was eating enough because my numbers were so low. I told her that not only am I eating enough, I am pushing the limits with my carbs and often eating more than my allotted amount and still getting numbers under 100. Her response was "vonderful" -yes she has a darling accent...and then she followed it up with "you probably just had a mild case of GD"

GD is such a confusing diagnoses because it truly affects everyone very differently. I joined a support group on FB and it's amazing to me how different we all are. Some people's numbers are through the roof if they even look at white bread...and some people can eat a bagel and cream cheese and be just fine. Some people can't get their fasting numbers below 90 without a nighttime snack...and others have no issues at all.

There are no rules that GD follows...especially when it comes to how it's controlled. After joining the group I am so grateful that I have had such an easy time controlling my numbers and haven't had to be put on medication.

Testing

I have gotten really bad with this...I have had several occasions where I forget to set my timer and then forget to test #Oops In the beginning I lived and died by my timer and was so neurotic about testing my numbers...but as time has gone on I have gotten pretty good at picking and choosing what to eat to keep my numbers where they need to be so I am not as concerned with checking, because I know they are just fine. The first time I called in with some missing numbers I worried they would be upset that I was forgetting, but they didn't say a word. I would really love to stop testing all together...my finger tips could really use the break :)

Exercise

Woof...this is seriously the last thing I want to do nowadays. I attempted my final run this morning...and after .25 miles and throbbing shins/calves I called it quits. My body is not a fan of lugging around these 20 extra lbs and isn't being shy about letting me know. I still haven't decided if I will continue to go to Jazzercise or not...or if I will just try to get in a 30 min walk each day? I'm on my feet moving around a lot at work every day...so even without my walk I am getting plenty of movement...my swollen ankles are proof! 

I am hoping that my decrease in exercise/activity doesn't make my numbers go crazy, but if it does I will just tighten up on my diet because at this point running is NOT an option, because believe me, if it was I would still be doing it!


Emotionally

This past week was a good one. I haven't had one "it's not fair moment" and I have been able to treat myself a few times and you would have thought I won the lottery on those days. 
I'm still on cloud 9 from being able to eat a double cheeseburger and a half a order of small fries from McDonalds...I'm pathetic :) 

Being in the homestretch and knowing I likely have less than 3 weeks left until I meet my little guy and return to my regular candy consumption has me feeling pretty darn good.
Friday, March 17, 2017

37 Weeks: Spring Break let me hug you!



I look extra tired this week...and I am...even being on spring break. The last month of pregnancy has hit me like a ton of bricks. It may be that I'm in denial that I need to (and should) slow down. There is just so much to do...and I'm "nesting" okay ;-)  

How far along?
37 weeks 

How big is baby?
Romaine Lettuce or a tackle box
 ~18.9" and ~6.17 lbs

What's baby up to this week?
He is practicing some cool , new skills: inhaling, exhaling, sucking, gripping, and blinking. He is also getting his first sticky poop ready for his first diaper...and daddy's first diaper change ;)

Symptoms?
My back has been a bit more achy this week and I am having a harder time getting comfortable...but my heartburn seems to have subsided a bit, so I will take it! The Braxton Hicks contractions have picked up and are a little more uncomfortable than before...my doc said this was normal and means my body is doing what it's supposed to to prep for baby's arrival! 

Maternity Clothes?
Still mixing maternity and non-maternity and don't have any plans to buy any more...we are so close to the end I can't fathom spending the money.

I am starting to worry about post-baby clothes though...what does one wear? Maternity clothes will be too big and I can't imagine my old clothes will be all that flattering right away. Good thing I will be home, because it may be sweatpants all day errryday :)

Sleep?
I'm waking up several times in the night to use the bathroom and having a little more trouble getting comfortable to fall back asleep. My belly has gotten heavy and baby is taking up every square inch of his uterine hotel.

Missing Anything?
Being able to get around quickly and without waddling :)

Craving?
No huge cravings this week...my intense need for candy from last week seems to have subsided. I have been able to sneak a few Sour Patch Kids with my meals so that has helped...did you know a whole 8 teeny tiny Sour Patch Kids have 17 carbs and more sugar than any one person should consume? #NowYouDo #YoureWelcome

Aversions?
Not really anything

Emotions?
Excited and anxious for Baby to be here! I can't believe we only have about 3 weeks!!!

Movement? 
He seems to be moving all day long...little pushes and nudges in my hips, ribs, pelvis...just about everywhere. My torso isn't the most spacious :)

Best Moment of the week
It sounds silly...but when you're 9 mos pregnant and feel like a whale compliments are music to your ears...and there is nothing better than a compliment that comes from a complete stranger. I was at Target earlier this week and as this lady walked by me she stopped and said "you are really cute pregnant...some women can't pull it off, but you're so tiny and cute you pull it off"

Seriously, I wanted to hug her...and then cry.

Pregnancy Brain Moments
Nothing really...being on Spring Break means you don't have to use your brain nearly as much :)

Looking forward to?
Finishing the nursery this weekend! 

Projects/Baby Gear purchased?
We got the car-seat installed...which was WAY easier than people made it seem. It took us less than 5 minutes...but the mirror? Attaching that to the head-rest took us almost 20 mins...it just didnt' make sense :)

We also put together a few other things, had our last birthing class, met with our pediatrician, and bought the last few things we needed! We are all set!
Running?
Running has gotten really hard...I've been managing to run a mile without any walk breaks and then finishing up another mile or two alternating running and walking...but I can feel myself coming to the end of this journey. Lil' man has dropped and my shins are not too crazy about carrying around these 20 extra lbs. I was hoping to make it to the very end...but sadly I don't think that will happen. I'll likely be walking and going to Jazzercise more than running from this point forward.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Gestational Diabetes Check In: Week 7

Another day, another finger prick...is this over yet?

I don't mean to sound whiny...because it's really not that bad, but I do have to say I am 150% over this whole GD thing. It's gotten easier...yes, but does it mean I like it? #Nope

24 more days until my due date...which means about 100 more finger pokes give or take depending on if this baby likes to arrive early like his momma, or if he will be more laid back (i.e. in no hurry) like his dad :) 

Diet

This may have been the very best thing to come out of this diagnoses...not only is baby getting the best nutrition possible, but AJ and I are enjoying some pretty spectacular meals.

These meals always have tons of leftovers, which turn into a very easy lunch for me...and the planning ahead means we waste very little food and are actually spending less money at the grocery store.

This last week I have been able to relax even more on my diet...I have even pushed the envelope a little more than normal (I successfully had Papa Johns pizza!!!) and my numbers have been great...a little low even.

From what I have read GD seems to peak between 32-34 weeks and then levels off toward the end due to the placentas natural aging process and baby getting bigger and needing more nutrients. I am still sticking to my diet as closely as possible, because I am a rule follower, but it's nice to be able to fit in a few fun meals here and there without worrying about my blood sugar spiking.

Testing

I am hoping I have purchased my last set of testing strips. If baby is born on his due date I will have plenty to get me through...but if he comes a little late I will be short a few strips. I am hoping to get permission from my doctor this week to test less. My numbers have all been in the 80's and 90's this last week (and she wants me below 120) and at $1.30 per test strip even one lest testing per day would be helpful :) 

I have read that some women still test their sugars after their baby is born to make sure their levels have gotten better...but I think I will just be mindful of what I eat to keep my blood sugars in check and wait until I get to take that lovely glucose test again at my 6 week post-postpartum appointment -oh yes, I get to drink that love drink again #BeJealous

Exercise

 This definitely isn't getting any easier as I get bigger and bigger...but I am so grateful that I am still able to get moving 5-6 days per week. I'm still running (with lots of walk breaks) at least 3 times per week, sometimes 4...and then trying to make it to Jazzercise 2-3 times each week. Working out not only helps my numbers, but I think it has played a huge part in alleviating back/hip/body pain :)

I definitely am starting to feel self-conscious about my run/waddle and my excellent dance moves...but I am 9 months pregnant, so I hope people aren't judging too harshly ;) 


Emotionally

In an effort to keep it real I have to admit I had my first bratty "IT'S NOT FAIR" moment this week. I usually can keep things in perspective, but on Saturday AJ was out with his brother eating Pizza Shoppe and then they were brewing beer afterwards...and I was stuck at home doing laundry and cleaning out the closets.

I usually treasure these Saturdays to myself (and I love a good organizing session) but I definitely had a few moments during the day where I resented that he was out eating delicious food, drinking beer, and having fun. It's been a LONG 9 months of giving up things and being DD...which of course is more than worth it to me...but pregnancy hormones cannot always be reasoned with :)

I had a little solo cry session, and then the feelings passed quickly and now that I am thinking clearly I know that every single little sacrifice these last 9 mos will be more than worth it when I hold our sweet boy in my arms. All I am saying is he better love his mommy the most :)
Friday, March 10, 2017

36 Weeks: I'm in granny panty heaven!


Holy moly, we are in the homestretch! I am definitely feeling every bit of 9 months pregnant and I am absolutely giddy at the thought that we will be meeting our little guy in about a month! 

How far along?
36 weeks-9 months!

How big is baby?
A Papaya or a cabbage patch doll
 ~18.7" and ~5.73 lbs

What's baby up to this week?
He is continuing to put on baby fat and his digestive system is the only major system that is not fully developed yet-and this won't happen until he is born.

Symptoms?
Holy heartburn...this was a symptom I was lucky enough to avoid for most of this pregnancy, but it has definitely caught up with me #TumsMe
 Swelling in my feet is still an issue after a long day at work, which in turn has made my calves/legs really sore, but other than that I have been feeling pretty good.

Maternity Clothes?
A total TMI, but I finally broke down and bought new underwear, and I have to tell you I am in granny panty heaven! Why did I wait so long?!?

Other than that I am embracing these warmer than average temperatures and squeezing myself into my maxi dresses :)   

Sleep?
Still sleeping pretty well, although I think my body would like to get at least 14 hours a night, because I am so darned tired! My bathroom breaks have gone up to at least 3 times per night...so that's fun, but I will be grateful that I am still relatively comfortable at this point.

Missing Anything?
My energy...I'm not sure if it's just this crazy time in the school year, but I am SO stinking tired!

Craving?
Sour Patch Kids, Swedish Fish, Sweet Tart Jelly Beans....basically candy, candy, and more candy! I have been able to work in a few sweet treats here and there with my meals, but candy is just one I can't seem to justify. It literally has zero nutrition and boat loads of sugar. Don't be surprised if you look in my hospital bag and see it half full of candy ;)

Aversions?
Not really anything

Emotions?
The excitement has set in...I cannot believe that in 4 short weeks (give or take) we will be meeting our little guy!

Movement? 
The movement has definitely changed...it's lower and mostly pushes and nudges with the occasional earthquake :) It's obvious that things are getting a bit crowded in there!

Best Moment of the week
The start of SPRING BREAK!! I'm so excited to wear sweatpants and prop my feet up and do nothing for a whole week!  

Pregnancy Brain Moments
My brain just works slower these days...so if you are trying to explain something simple to me and I don't get it...please be patient ;)

Looking forward to?
SPRING BREAK!!

Projects/Baby Gear purchased?
I bought his Easter outfit this weekend :) At my last appointment I asked my doctor how much past my due date she would allow me to go and she said she would let me go up to a week, which means he will definitely be here by Easter...which has me SO excited :) Also, this means I can have Easter candy...soooo I am keeping my fingers crossed the Easter Bunny brings me a nice big ol' basket of goodies ;) #HintHint

I also plan to head out for a little last minute shopping spree to pick up the few things we still need and FINALLY get the rest of the stuff hung up in the nursery, I want his room to be all ready for him by the end of spring break. 

Running?
After making it to 3rd trimester my goal was to make it to 36 weeks and I am happy to say I did it! I'm only running about 3x per week and mixing in lots of walk breaks, but running is running at this point :) On Wednesday I was even able to run 1 mile without stopping to walk...which if you had asked me one year ago, would not be something to celebrate, but at 9 months pregnant I choose to celebrate this mini win!

My goal was 36 weeks...and at this point it will truly be day by day. I am going to continue to run as long as my body will allow, and if I can get in a run the day before/of delivery that would be even better ;)

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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Gestational Diabetes Check In: Week 6


It's been a pretty uneventful week, which is exactly the way I like it! I had a doctor's appointment where the doctor was happy with my blood sugars, baby's size, and she again assured me that all is well! She said as long as I can remain diet controlled she will continue to treat this like a regular pregnancy...which is great news! 

From what I have read/heard 36 weeks is usually where the hormones peak and people either struggle to keep their numbers level with diet alone and tend to be put on meds or when things level out and it gets easier...so far I think I am one of the lucky ones. Keeping my fingers crossed this is the case!

Diet

I really thought that by this point I would be struggling hard core...but as with most things it has gotten easier as the weeks tick by. Sure, I wouldn't mind diving head-first into a bowl of candy...but I wouldn't say it's all that hard to avoid or not eat. 2 years ago when training for the Heartland 39.3 series and working towards my sub 1:45 half-marathons I managed to keep my diet pretty strict...so I guess it goes to show if I really want something I can show some pretty mean self-control...and what better motivator than a healthy baby?

We found a few new meals to try this week, but so far have only made one of them and let me tell you...O-M-G! I have been having a wicked craving for a cheeseburger lately and this totally hit the spot...I mean, minus the delicious bun and steak fries ;) but I will take what I can get right now!

Bacon Cheeseburger Cauliflower Casserole
**We actually used the Green Giant riced cauliflower to make prep a little quicker/easier and it turned out great! I honestly couldn't even taste the cauliflower, so if you are hesitant because of that...don't be! We even talked about getting some whole wheat buns for next time and eating it more like a sloppy joe...so we shall see :) 

Also, I had another mini-win this week...I had a bowl of cereal for breakfast (with a protein shake) and my blood sugars were only a 91! I can't tell you how happy this has made me...cereal is seriously one of my love languages and something I have missed like crazy! Granted I only had a cup of Kix (the blandest cereal ever) but it was a total win in my books! 
And, Fairlife Milk...this has been a total game-changer for me. I have been craving milk like crazy and this is high protein, low sugar, low carb milk that is still VERY delicious! I even had chocolate milk with breakfast once this week and my numbers stayed below target...WAHOO!

Testing

I loathe this part...it's a pain in the you know what! At first I really didn't mind because I liked knowing my numbers, and to some extent I still do, but they have been really consistent that I wouldn't mind testing less...or not at all ;) I forgot to ask my doctor at my last appointment, but I may ask her at the next one if I can cut down on testing...otherwise I will have to buy another box of testing strips...and those things are expensive!

We are down to 31-ish days until baby boy is here...which means if I keep testing 4x a day I have about 124 more finger pokes. Sounds like a lot...but having a countdown will definitely help keep me sane ;)

Exercise

 I love to exercise...always have, but this part is getting harder and harder the bigger I get. Running is getting tougher because of the swelling in my feet so I have been run/walking...with longer bouts of walking as the weeks go by, but Jazzercise has still been going pretty well, so I will keep that up as long as possible! I just keep hoping that what they say is true about exercise and an easier labor ;)


Emotionally

I've hit the "get this baby out of me" stage of pregnancy...we only have 4 more weeks, and I want him to cook as long as possible so he will be healthy and strong...but I am so ready to be un-pregnant. Besides the obvious discomforts of being HUGE...I'm ready to relax a little on my diet and eat some of my favorite foods...and have an ice cold beer!
Friday, March 3, 2017

35 Weeks: Wait, my uterus is how big?!?


The Bump app says that my uterus has grown to about 1,000 times it's original size...which may seem like an exaggeration to you, but feels (and looks) like a total understatement to me ;)

How far along?
35 weeks

How big is baby?
A Pineapple or a child's backpack
 ~18.1" and ~5.07 lbs

What's baby up to this week?
Most of his development is complete this week, although he is still growing stronger and refining his abilities as delivery day nears. The only organs that need a bit more work are his lungs.

Symptoms?
My poor feet...they weren't so bad at the beginning of the week, but by the end of a long work week they are swollen and sore. I am not swelling anywhere else, so I guess I should be grateful. Other than that I am just having some Braxton Hicks contractions and I have been a little more tired....so really I count myself pretty lucky!   

Maternity Clothes?
Ugh...I just want to dress and look normal again. I feel like I have totally thrown in the towel on trying to look cute...if it fits, I wear it...and I may wear it multiple times in a week ;) 

Sleep?
Minus one night where I just could not get comfortable, I have been sleeping great (knock on wood) I still get up 1-2x a night to go to the bathroom, but I fall right back asleep.

Missing Anything?
My old body...and I am not talking about the way it looked, but the way it worked. I feel slow, clumsy, awkward, and weak. While it is really nice to have people always willing to help me out, I am pretty independent and I miss being able to lift, carry, and move things by myself.

Craving?
Maybe I should switch this category to what I am not craving...because honestly, my appetite has been through the roof and I would eat anything and everything right now...turning down some of my "absolutely not" foods this week has been harder than normal.

Aversions?
It's not necessarily an aversion...but I am so sick of eggs. After this baby is born the only eggs I plan on eating will be in a cake ;)

Emotions?
I would say mostly happy...but it's been too busy of a week and I am craving some down time majorly! 

Movement? 
Still lots of movement all the time and I can tell he is getting awfully crowded. Sometimes he gets himself situated to where his butt is sticking out on my right side...my bump looks awfully weird when he does this, and it's not the most comfortable either!

Best Moment of the week
I had 3 incredible showers this week! I have the best students, co-workers, and friends a girl could ask for! I have been in hog-heaven unpacking presents and organizing his room!

I also had another great doctor's appointment...baby is growing right on track and his HR is still right around 140. It's crazy to think that I start my weekly appointments and progress checks in 2 weeks!! It's almost time to meet our lil' man! 

Pregnancy Brain Moments
I was trying to put my cover back on my Snoogle after washing it this weekend and I could not for the life of me figure out how to get started...it was pathetic really. After a few minutes I looked at AJ (almost in tears) and said "I just don't get it...I know it's simple, but it doesn't make sense to me"

Looking forward to?
One more week until Spring Break...my cankles will be so grateful ;) 

Projects/Baby Gear purchased?
Baby Smith was spoiled rotten this week with all the baby showers! He has everything he needs (and then some) ready to go for his arrival!


Running?
 This may be the first week where I didn't feel like running...I usually look forward to my runs, but this week I dreaded them. I think because of how tough last week was, and how much harder running has gotten I am starting to dread it. I do always feel better when I am done, but I am not sure how much longer I will last. I was hoping to make it to at least 36 weeks...so maybe I will hold on for at least one more week :)

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